Green is the New Blue
Before I go into a client meeting to present new branding concepts, I always predict that the men in the group will gravitate toward the concepts that feature the color blue. I’m almost always right. Like 99% of the time. I even had a garden product client who loved our designs ─ all in shades of green for obvious reasons ─ who asked if we could change everything to blue. Then of course there’s my male client who says, “Any color but pink…!” (He used to be a race car driver).
So I think it’s fair to say that most men prefer the color blue. And evidently, studies as far back as the 1920’s across multiple cultures have found that, overall, both men and women prefer blue to all other colors. But men choose it more often. And the women who do prefer blue like their shade on the red end of the spectrum. That’s where this “girls wear pink” thing came from.
I was educated in Catholic schools and basically wore the same style navy blue jumper uniform (with a white Peter Pan collar blouse) for 12 years. Any wonder that blue isn’t one of my Top 5 color picks? I’m still in recovery.
Psychologists report that color impression can account for 60 – 70% of consumer reaction. That’s a good thing to know when you’re designing marketing materials, packaging or products targeted to a specific gender or socio-economic group. So while blue is the most popular color overall, don’t even think about introducing a blue food product. Dead-on-arrival (blueberries being the exception).
For some reason I always remember intuitively knowing that orange meant “inexpensive,” “cheap.” And sure enough, men and women both feel that way about it. Yet the Color of the Year for 2012 was Tangerine. So clearly, some shades of orange can be perceived as more upscale than others.
So what is the Hot New Color for 2013? Emerald: A lively, lush, radiant green...sophisticated and luxurious...the color of beauty and new life. I can live with that.